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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014

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In Dining

Sweet Water Organics is partnering with Empire Fish to provide fresh perch to area restaurants and retail outlets.

Sweet Water and Empire partner to sate Milwaukee's perch jones


Two of Milwaukee's best-known fish and culinary-related businesses are partnering on a new project.

Sweet Water Organics, an urban fish and vegetable farm in Bay View, and Empire Fish, the area's largest distributor of fresh seafood, will work together to bring fresh perch fillets to the local market. The partnership will, in the words of a joint statement, "revive access to a lost local fare."

"Partnering with a company like Empire makes sense for us because we both recognize the importance of sustainable aquaculture," says Todd Leech, sales manager for Sweet Water Organics.

"They are committed to providing their customers with great fresh products and we are confident in their ability to represent Sweet Water's fish to a larger audience."

Sweet Water will raise the fish and provide it to Empire each week to distribute to local restaurants and retail outlets, including Empire's own store in Wauwatosa.

A number of area restaurants -- including La Merenda, Coquette Cafe, Sanford, and Cafe Metro in the Hotel Metro -- have apparently already expressed interest in buying the perch.

"We firmly support (Sweet Water's) efforts to bring sustainable aquaculture to our area and we welcome the opportunity to partner with (Sweet Water) long into the future," said Dan Ryan, Empire's general manager and fresh seafood buyer.

"We've (been) educating people about the need to support sustainable seafood for many years now and are glad to have another partner in the fight."


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